Title III Parent, Family, and Community Engagement Requirements
Charter districts are often in shared service arrangements (SSAs) for Title III federal funds. Whether you are in a SSA or receive the Title III funds directly, you are required to provide parental engagement activities specifically targeted towards your Emergent Bilingual learner families. Today’s article will assist LEAs with understanding what qualifies as parent, family, and community engagement (PFCE) activities under Title III. These activities are collected on your annual ESSA compliance report, and all three types are required. CSS has collected helpful resources to thoughtfully plan and evaluate your Title III PFCE activities.
The CSS Federal Team will assist our client Charter Districts in evaluating PFCE activities to assure compliance with Title III requirements.
What is Parent, Family, & Community Engagement under Title III?
Any LEA or Charter District who receives Title III funding shall use the funds to provide and implement other effective activities and strategies that enhance or supplement language instruction educational programs for English learners, which (A) shall include parent, family, and community engagement activities; and (B) may include strategies that serve to coordinate and align related programs. [Title III, Part A, Section 3115 (c)(3)(A)(B)]
Parent engagement includes working together in a parent-school relationship with on-going, goal-directed communication and culturally responsive support. This shared responsibility seeks what is best for the academic success of students and families, both individually and collectively.
Family literacy services integrate the following:
- Interactive literacy activities between parent and child
- Training in parenting activities
- Literacy training that leads to economic self-sufficiency (e.g., teaching adults to read)
- Age appropriate education to prepare children for success in school and life experiences1
1 “OCTAE.” ED, U.S. Department of Education
Family outreach and training provide parents with the required parent and family literacy services, activities, and trainings needed to improve their English language skills. These services enhance the academic achievement of English learners and immigrant students and their families.
Community participation programs: Participation is the action of taking part in an activity or an event. Under Title III, Part A, “community participation programs” are programs in which English learners, parents, and family members can take part.
Source: https://www.txel.org/titleiii/ (See this site for one-pager ideas!)
Definitions and Examples
- Parents = Parents and guardians of enrolled students
- Example: Bilingual newsletter for EB parents
- Family = Parents + Students (activities that involve both)
- Example: Math night for EB parents while students do math activities in childcare or math games with their parents
- Community = Parents + Students + Community (extended family, community centers and organizations, resources in the community for assistance)
- Example: Adult ESL class with guest speakers from community, such as a bank doing bilingual financial literacy, while students do instructional activities in childcare
Please click here for more examples and ideas of PFCE activities (including virtual examples).
How are requirements reported to TEA?
The primary source to report compliance with the Title III PFCE requirements is the end of year compliance report – specifically the PR3002 section of the ESSA Consolidated Compliance Report. The LEA is required to list the sources of documentation (click here) that it has readily available to submit to the agency. Listed below are the specific questions. It is important to note that Title III funds might not have paid for all of these activities; regardless, all are still required as a condition for receiving Title III funds.
- Did the LEA provide and implement effective parent engagement activities to parents of English learner students that were above and beyond other federal programs? (Use of funds question #1)
- Did the LEA provide and implement effective family engagement activities to families of English learner students that were above and beyond other federal programs? (question #2)
- Did the LEA provide and implement effective community engagement activities to parents of English learner students that were above and beyond other federal programs? (question #3)
Activities must be conducted in all three categories, and the offerings should be based on the needs of your EB families. Whole-school parent events do not qualify! It is important to think ahead about which activities you will pick to report so that you can plan how you will document them and evaluate if the activities are worthwhile. For example, you will want to pick the main events and collect feedback, such as surveys, from the participants of the events. Remote and virtual events are also acceptable as long as they are documented.
What resources are available to improve our Title III PFCE activities?
- Supporting English Learners in Texas – TEA website
- Region 11 Parent Support Page
- Free online English lessons
- TEA ELL Toolkit
- State Zoom Sessions for Parents
Please contact Charter School Success:
Dr. Sheila K. Sherman firstname.lastname@example.org
Ask questions, get answers, and discuss this topic on the Charter School Community Roundtable now.